Last Man Vols. 1-5 of Vivès, Balak and Sanlaville | Review


Published on Dec 15, 2019


Adrian Velba 12 years old and lives a happy existence. After training hard all year in the combat school of the Master Jansen, is now finally able to participate in the annual tournament sponsored by the king and queen of his Country.

Unfortunately, a few hours before the closing of the application form, his partner has defected, because the sick. The shot is really bad for Adrian, because to participate in the tournament you need to be in two. Fortunately, in extremis, Adrian is (not the case) a man that no one has ever seen before in the city, Richard Aldana. Aldana offers Adrian a pact to fight together. However, the mother of Adrian is very suspicious about that type, but in any case it gives its ok to the son...

Also France, well before Italy, has attempted to create their own strand of the manga (quite successfully in some cases, such as the Radiant Tony Valente), even if, in reality, many exponents of the new generation of French have chosen a line which is often the result of various influences (suffice it to mention, Timothé Le Boucher), and that it has abandoned the more classic line clear.

Vivès, Balak and Sanlaville, without actually specifying their roles, they live in Last Man whole generation that loved the souls arrived in France, even from the point of view of the form, since it begins with a few color pages before continuing black-and-white.

But it is not only the external shape to show the mood of the manga: many features of the narrative and the visual are imported from shonen japanese, as you can see from the construction of the tables, and by the extreme dynamism of the narrative action, thanks to the cuts of the scenes, which, as in the manga, since the time of Tezuka's wink to the film construction. Especially the clashes demonstrate that they have well learned the lesson from the classics of manga such as Dragon Ball (also in France, as in Italy, the shonen for excellence), both for the characterization of the characters, which for the shots of the clashes. However, fortunately, the structure of the tournament is not repetitive as in Dragon Ball, occupying only the first two volumes.

All this would not be appreciable without the characters well designed that from the beginning we have the feeling to know, perhaps because, as the narrative traced out on some of the topoi of classic manga: the kid who is shy and clumsy, who finds within himself the strength to get to achieve his dreams, Adrian; a fighter who is lonely looking for a ransom, Richard Aldana, etc., not to speak of the mother of Adrian, strong woman from the beginning, but by the end of the second volume shows absolutely no capacity which, honestly, not we suspected the existence.

The section is not particularly evocative, as in the manga of the stretch master is not in the plans of the authors, both with regard to the background, often only outlined, both with regard to the characters often.

This probably will not create disturbance in the readers of the manga, perhaps it will encourage the purchase of the entire series; but fans of Blake and Mortimer might get confused (even if not all volumes have the same level of adherence to the stylistic features of manga to tell you the truth...).

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